Sunday, September 29, 2013

Happy Birthday Daddy!

We celebrated Brian's birthday on Saturday night for dinner with his parents.  Then on his actual birthday we spent the day just the 4 of us at Indiana Dunes (I haven't gotten those picture off the camera yet-I did NOT take either of my cameras that had been fixed).  But here are a few pictures of Brian with his ice cream cake (Thanks Amy for the recipe!  I use it every time I have to make an ice cream cake.) and the birthday cards that N2 made for Brian.

 Natalie's in the first one and Noah's is the second one.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

New Hairdos

We are trying to grow out Natalie's bangs.  They are not too long that they get into her eyes but she's looking a little unkempt if I don't do something with them.  Nothing stays in her hair at school so I don't know why I try!  But here she is with her cute little pigtails-I can't make them go back further because then the bangs wouldn't stay in!
Noah has decided recently that he wants a Mohawk.  He hasn't let me do his usual cut because he wants to grow out.  On Saturday he went to the bathroom and took a wet comb and tried to give himself a Mohawk.  So I fixed it and got it to stay with some wax and now this is his normal hairdo which I think looks absolutely cute!
The problem is getting it to stay.  I tried gel today but that didn't help.  He put up his hood when he went outside and it flattened out.  Any advice or is that just how it works?

I got some cute pictures of N2 together because they were such willing subjects!

Saturday, September 21, 2013


During the second summer session of swimming, Natalie was in Ray and we didn't have Noah in a class because there was a big mix up on the Y's part and he had been put in a class too low for him.  So Brian or I would work with him during Natalie's swim lessons.  He did really well working with us.  His confidence really improved.  We decided we would put him in Ray this fall because he can do it he just may not always think he can.

Natalie's class wasn't as good as the first Ray she was in.  In the first Ray class she was jumping off the starting blocks without being caught by a noodle or anything, surfacing and then swimming to the side.  In this class they were practicing jumping off the diving board and then being caught by a noodle.  They didn't even have to swim to the side themselves!  The Y just sent out a survey about their aquatics program and I gave them my mind!  We'll see how this class shapes up but with 6 kids in the class, there is not a lot of swimming time per kid.  The teacher that Natalie had at the beginning of the summer isn't teaching this session due to him not showing up all the time but hopefully he'll be able to teach again soon.

Here's Noah's class with Brian.  I'm really thinking about semi private lessons for N2 and just paying the exorbitant cost to get them more comfortable with swimming and then maybe we won't need swim lesson for too much longer.  Or maybe I need to look into another swim school.  I'm really debating this.

Friday, September 20, 2013

The Tale of 3 Mini Golfers

Once upon a time there were three mini golfers who played in the drizzle in Estes Park the last afternoon of the Dueber reunion.  One was a 5 year old girl who loves purple, another was a 4 year old boy who is a lefty, and the last was a 4 year old girl who has a mind of her own.  This was the first time on a miniature golf course for the first little girl.  Her expert mini golfer mommy showed her how she should stand and promptly little girl number one knew the correct stance and proper hold for her golf clubs.  Her ball went smoothly down the green and her putts were consistent.

 Then there was the second little golfer-the little lefty boy.  This little boy had more of a struggle learning how to stand and how to position his hands and golf club.  It could because neither of the golfers' mommies are left handed.  But after a time or two, this little boy was able to hit the ball properly.  His golf ball would head down towards the hole and he could putt into the hole.

 Then there was the third little golfer-the girl with her own mind.  No matter how much instruction she had, she always golfed in her own way.  Her stance could vary from hole to hole.  Her ball would sometimes move smoothly to the hole and other times it would bounce off the walls and not go the right way.  But she never minded that she wasn't doing it the correct way, she was doing it her way!

 Each little golfer had fun no matter which way they golfed.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Japanese Festival-Botanic Gardens

To celebrate my birthday, we went to the Botanic Gardens for their Japanese Festival.  They had a storyteller, kyoto drum performance, a tea ceremony and a harp player.  They also had activities for kids-a kite craft, a fan craft, a play sushi set with learner chopsticks, Origami, zen gardens, and a station for writing Japanese characters.  The kids really sat and listened intently to the storyteller for about 20 minutes or so-we had to excuse ourselves after about 25 minutes to go do the crafts.

They each made kites and then flew them in the grassy area by the pavilion.

Then we watched the Kyoto drummers.  They were so fun to watch but none of the kids liked them as much as I did.  They just wanted to fly their kites!

Then we went to explore the other activities-like practicing with chop sticks, and raking zen gardens.

Then we went back to my house and had dinner, cake and half cupcakes for N2 since it was their 1/2 birthday!

 Mom had to play dress up and imaginary play while dinner was cooking.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013


Before I went back to work in August, I wanted to take N2 to Brookfield Zoo with Grace.  We found a nice, not hot day in August.  There were 2 baby giraffes-one was born in November (so not so much a baby anymore) and the other one was born June.  We also got to see 2 addax calves (apparently another calf was born in just the last week or two-they said their addax population almost doubled this year with 4 births of male calves).

That is the baby giraffe.  That tree stump is not that tall.  We also saw a bison that was eating from the other side of the fence!  He could easily stick his head out and back!

We really enjoyed going and see all the animals that they wanted to see and then we played in the play zoo for a while.

We're going to have to go back because they have snow leopard cubs-how cute is that?  They also have sloth bear cubs that we didn't see when we were there.  We'll have to find those too.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Busy Bees Adventure Farm

***Long post with lots of pictures

We met up with Marcie, Amelia and Megan on Saturday at the Busy Bees Adventure Farm in Ft. Aktinson, WI.   This was such a fun place for the kids to play!  One of the events that they have throughout the day is the hog hustle.  They have piglets run around a pen with felt velcro flags on them and kids have to chase them to grab 2 flags.  We arrived just as they were starting the first one (Marcie wasn't there yet) and Natalie would NOT run around after the pigs.  Luckily she ran after then the next two times we participated.  It's really hard to get pictures of this because adults constantly were in the way of my camera!

Here are the piglets (named ham, bacon, pork, etc) waiting for the kids to chase them.

Off they go!
Here they get their flags.

All of the kids LOVED to chase the pigs but I think Megan enjoyed it the most.  We attended all of the hog hustles.  After that we went to see what else they on the farm.  They had plenty of goats that we could feed.   Luckily Aunt Marcie had quarters!  The big goats would butt aside the little ones but all the kids tried their hardest to feed the little ones.

There was a barn with more animals in it and my favorite with the kittens.  They were so cute and cuddly and small!  They were up for adoption and I wish I could have taken one home!  There were pot belly piglets there that we all get to pet and baby goats.  They all really enjoyed this barn but I didn't get good pictures.

The kids really enjoyed the tube slide where they sat on carpet squares.  There was an indoor and outdoor slides.

There were lost of fun things to play with outside-a music garden, an obstacle course, a tire obstacle course they could climb on, a tricycle track, and so much more.  (I only have pictures of Natalie on tires and obstacle course because I had taken her to the bathroom and the other kids had already done those two).

They had a trivia corn maze.  We had to get the kids to pay attention to the signs and try to figure out if they were true or false.  We would go the direction of the signs and if we hit a dead end we knew we answered the question wrong.  There was also a rope maze that the kids played in for a while.  They had fun climbing under and over the ropes.

We attended a puppet show that was the story of the 3 Billy Goats Gruff but instead it was the 3 Cows Gruff.  All the kids really liked it.  There were pretend horses right outside the barn and the kids really enjoyed riding on them.  Natalie even pretended to be a jockey.

A favorite was definitely the rat races.  Each kid got in a tube/wheel and started crawling or walking to get the wheel to move down the tracks.  They did this over and over and over again!  I even got in a tried it but it was hard because I got going too fast!

We took a ride on the hayride and we didn't know that it stopped at the pumpkin patch and we were expected to get out and pick a pumpkin.  We let the kids pick little ones.  I did not get good pictures of all the kids together-maybe Marcie did.
 Marcie also took lots of pictures so maybe she has more that she can share.  This was really a fun place and somewhere N2 want to go back.  Maybe we'll go during their spring fest!